HED:Man convicted in child molestation case
From staff & wire reports
BOONEVILLE – A Prentiss County jury of seven men and five women deliberated about 50 minutes before finding a Hills Chapel community resident guilty of child molestation.
Ricky O’Neal Holloway, 39, was found guilty of fondling and sexual battery of a 12-year-old female in a two-day trial that ended Wednesday.
The crimes occurred on January 12, 1998, according to the indictment.
On Thursday, Circuit Judge Thomas Gardner sentenced Holloway to five years on the fondling charge and 15 years, with five years suspended, for sexual battery of a child under 14. The sentences will run concurrently and Holloway must register as a sex offender upon his release.
Assistant district attorneys Jim Pounds and Arch Bullard prosecuted the case for the state.
“This is the second trial on child molestation charges in Prentiss County in two years,” Pounds said. “The last time we tried a man, he got life without parole. We hope this sends a message that we will do everything we can to protect the children of our district.”